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Deep Creek needs your help

Posted: March 5, 2014 - 5:48pm

I love Deep Creek Recreation Area. It is located in the town of Ninilchik. I have been drawn back to the park since my first visit in 1992. I have camped beachside, dug for clams, used the boat launch and fished for salmon and Dolly Varden in the nearby anadromous river. I have watched the breathtaking sunsets on Mount Iliamna and Mount Redoubt across the inlet, seen the eagles soaring high above the cliffs and photographed the many shorebirds that inhabit the saltwater marsh. And, once, I even watched two young moose make their way through the busy campground.

You need to know what’s happening to the park if you have ever visited Deep Creek or plan to in the future. 

Deep Creek State Recreation Area is in dire need of funding to save it from complete loss. Erosion, understaffing and deferred maintenance is taking its toll.

Most of the beachside campsites have eroded into the inlet, the riverbanks are crumbling into the river, the restrooms are rusting away and the boat launch is unusable.  If the erosion is allowed to continue the commercial boat launch in the park will also be in jeopardy.

The Alaska State Parks currently has millions of dollars of unfunded deferred maintenance in Alaska’s State Parks.   This area has been under funded and short staffed for years. Help is needed requesting funding to save Deep Creek from the erosion problem and to maintain and manage it.

The loss of Deep Creek Beach will be far reaching. The community of Ninilchik, the residents of the state of Alaska and the tourism industry, will feel the impact because people from all over the state and world visit this very special place. 

Did you know that the Ninilchik Beach campground, at the nearby Ninilchik State Recreation Area was recently been lost to erosion? The state can’t afford to lose another of its treasures.

Please help save Deep Creek. Take a few moments, call or email your legislators and park officials. Let them know how much this park means to you.

• Gov. Sean Parnell by email at sean.parnell@alaska.gov or by phone at 907-465-3500.

• Joe Balash, Natural Resources commissioner, joe.balash@alaska.gov or by phone at 907-269-8431.

Thank you so much.

Joan Witteman

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